September 22, 1895
TO CORRESPONDENTS -- When writing letters to Big Hat's department for publication, write on one side of the paper only. Printers never turn their copy, and the editor has no time to rewrite half, or even part, of your letters. Give your full name and address. Anonymous letters are never printed. These rules are imperative.
GUS LEE FORD, Farmers Branch, Dallas Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: I have never written to The News before, and the reason why I have not is because two months ago we took a notion to go "out west" to see my cousin, and I thought I would wait and tell you about my trip. We started on the 19th of August, and returned on the 29th. On Monday morning we loaded our wagon for the trip. A neighbor friend went with us. We did not get very far the first morning. In the evening we passed through Grapevine and stopped there awhile with another one of my cousins. In the evening we camped at Lonesome Dove schoolhouse. On Tuesday morning it looked very much like rain. However, we traveled on till noon, when we reached a creek, a nice place to camp. While in camp we were overtaken by a very heavy rain. The remainder of our[?] road was through sand and mud, over rocks and mountains until we arrived at Bowie, our journey's end. The country south of Bowie, six or seven miles, is very rough. You can almost throw a rock, of which there are plenty! across any of the farms between those mountains. On the way from here, there is some pretty country. We passed many large pastures full of fat cattle, also big watermelon patches. We stayed two days and nights and started home. We children took great walking spells. The sand got hot to our feet. I had a fine time on my trip, and enjoyed seeing the country, but I would not live out there, if I could help it. Well, Mr. Big Hat, Oklahoma's death was too bad. I am a red-headed farmer boy, and am 11 years old.
WINIFRED CAUGHRAN, Boyce, Ellis Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and every one of the cousins: I wonder if any of the cousins and Mr. Big Hat, too, remember me? I have only written once before, and that was several months ago, and then Mr. Big Hat and one of the cousins asked me to write and tell about my trip from Tennessee to Texas. Perhaps some of the cousins know more about it than I do, for I guess the most of them have been over the same road, but I will tell of things that were of most interest to me. We bade our sisters and friends farewell at Kelso, Tenn., early in the morning, and landed in Nashville at 11 o'clock. We stayed there until 8 at night. While there we went to the capital, which is a large building, the largest I was ever in. We went up stairsteps and stairsteps, until we were all tired out. From there we went to Polk's monument and residence. We picked up stones off his grave and then we went to Jackson's statue. I thought it grand. We also went to Watkins' hall. The most amusing thing of all was a mummy there. She was 1000 years old, and her skin looked like the bark of a sycamore. We also saw jaws of alligators, and old weapons used during the revolutionary war. We then left Nashville and landed in Memphis about daybreak the next morning. The prettiest sight I saw on the road was when we went down Main street. We could see the Mississippi river at the end of every block. We traveled all that day in water, and through the Mississippi and Arkansas bottoms. We landed at Greenville, Tex., the next morning. That was my first sight of black waxy, and oh, how muddy it was! I thought if Texas was all like that, I was willing to go back to Tennessee right then. We had to lie over there all day, then landed in Waxahachie that night. This is not well told, and I expect it will make the cousins fall over like a poisoned bug. I am preparing a "great big heap" to start to school at Bluff Grove in a short time.
JIM F. PAGE, Cawthon, Grimes Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: Will you please allow another "sleepy-head" (as our friend Ethel A. Pierce terms us) to enter your happy circle? As our friend says, the girls are leaving us so far behind, I thought I would scribble one more letter to the grand old News before we boys have to say farewell. The girls keep saying they have beat the boys as badly that they have got me to think that they have only beat us in their own estimation. We boys have things more important to do than to be writing and bragging how we have beat some one. Girls, don't think that I mean all of you, for some of the girls can't be beat, and some of the boys, too. I know that I can't write an interesting letter as some do, but don't you all expect much and you won't be disappointed. Kind friend, Miss Ethel, I reckon probably the great statesmen and men of importance in this land were boys once like we are now, and maybe some of us sleepy-heads will have to fill the honored places they now occupy. Probably you will not think then we were as sleepy-headed as you thought. Were the gallant Lee and Jackson, who led the magnificent columns of the magnificent southern grays through their long and desperate struggle, once sleepy heads, too? Festus Bennett, if you don't care I won't believe what you told. Mr. Big Hat, I am a farmer's boy. I picked 222 pounds of cotton to-day. I am 16 years old. Our school will begin next month at Lake Grove. We have an able teacher. I love to go school. I am going to study hard and get an education and be of some use in the world. Mr. Big Hat, I am going to make a lawyer of myself. What do you think of that profession? I live in the northern portion of Grimes county, one and a half miles northwest of the little village of Cawthon. This is mostly a farming country. We raise good crops and have lots of fun and good society I attend Sunday school at McAry, and we have a fine school and lots of good people. Protracted meetings have been the order of the day during the summer. The Campbellites carried on a meeting and ended with seventeen converts. The freewill Baptists held a meeting near Iola and closed with sixteen members. I don't belong to any church, but I believe in the doctrine of the missionary Baptists. I will ask some questions: When is a civil case tried in a district court before a jury? In what case is a judge forbidden to preside? What if a majority of the supreme or appellate court be disqualified? What is done if a judge of the district court be thus qualified?
WILLIE V. TERRELL, Seguin, Guadalupe Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: I have been to church at DeLaney, and have just got back. I like to read the children's letters very much. There are but three cousins that I know of writing from Seguin, and they are Walter H. Butler, Albert Honde and myself. Crops are looking dry. Albert comes to my house to go in swimming and we have lots of fun. Mr. Big Hat, come down here and we will go fishing and hunting. We live on the bank of the river. I will ask some questions: Why is a balloon like good light bread? When does a man look round? Where ought sorrowful people to go? I will answer Albert Konde's question. If there were three birds sitting on a limb and he was to shoot, one, there would not be any left because they would all fly away. Success to The News.
LOUELLA FLOYD, Orlando, Logan Co., Okla. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: Will you admit a 10-year-old girl into your happy band? Our school has not begun yet, but will start soon. Mamma is going visiting, so sister and I are to spend the evening alone and we thought we would write to Mr. Big Necktie. I have a sweet baby sister only 3 months old. We are going to have a picnic in Orlando, Sept. 18. I am in the fourth grade. Emmett O'Reilly, Damascus is the oldest city in the world. Mr. Big Hat, the story of Oklahoma, your cat, was very interesting. Lida May Webster, what are the names of your dolls that are to get married? Ida Pfeffer, your last letter was real interesting. Well, Mr. Big Hat, this is my first attempt to write to The News and if Peggy gets it, I hope it will choke her so that she will never want to see another one from me.
SALLIE FLOYD, Orlando, Logan Co., Okla. -- Good evening, Mr. Big Hat and cousins. The sun is down and as I have nothing to do I thought there could not be a better time for me to have a talk with the band of merry chatterers. I have written to The News twice before, but it has been so long ago that I know all of the cousins have forgotten me. Mr. Big Hat, you are certainly a wise little editor, which is prove by your interesting department. Evangel Bowman, you write nice letters for one so young. Nell Fallon, won't you write oftener? Mattie Rigdon and Mamie Johnson, why don't you come again? Why, Bessie Bee! where in America are you? Can't we entreat you to write again? L. C. Fountain, your article, "How days are lost and picked up," was very beneficial. Nell Morris, did you ever live at Black Springs, Tex.? Well, Mr. Big Hat, I hope you will get this letter and not Peg.
CHARLES O'DONNELL, Grand Prairie, Dallas Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: I thought I would write once more to the Cozy Corner. I have been picking cotton for over a week. We have two bales picked now. I can pick 200 pounds of cotton per day. Mr. Big Hat, I believe I can beat you picking cotton. Your eyes must be weak, as you wear specks. Does Peggy wear specks, too? I live five miles south of Grand Prairie. It is not a very big town. It has one or two dry goods stores, three grocery stores, one drug store, one hardware store, one blacksmith shop and a postoffice. Mr. Big Hat, I thank you kindly for printing my last letter and I hope you will not let Peggy have this one. My age is 13 years.
MARY SEABOALT, Astonia, Ellis Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat: I am a little girl 6 years old. I have two brothers and two sisters. I have no pets but a little chicken. Mr. Big Hat, I want you to come to see me and we will have a fine time. Jennie May came to see me the other day and we had a good time making rag dolls and playing with popcorn.
ETTA ATKINSON, Palestine, Anderson Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: Although I have never written to the Cozy Corner before I feel like one of the cousins. I believe in encouraging the boys as well as the girls. Cousin L. C. Fountain, we would be glad to welcome you into our grand state. Lottie Evangel, come again. I enjoyed your letter very much, if you did not get your mamma to spell the hard words. It is so nice to have a mamma to help us, and oh, we should appreciate her so much! Mr. Big Hat, I know all the cousins sympathize with you in the loss of your pet, Oklahoma. Cousin Nell Fallon, the height of my ambition is to be a good literary teacher. I taught one school last winter and I have contracted for another to begin the 4th of November. Mamma and papa encourage me a great deal. I am 17 years old.
DORA BENNETT, Saltillo, Hopkins Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: If it is agreeable I will write again. I would write oftener, but I am afraid Mr. Big Hat would get tired of printing my letters. Nothing gives me more pleasure than the cousins' letters. It is also a great pleasure to see so many sympathizing letters for a poor invalid like me. Wilhelmine M. Clark, your letter had such sweet words, it seemed to strike my heart. One of our good neighbors died this morning, leaving five boys and two girls to mourn the loss of a good mother. If I was to lose my mother, what would I do? I have no father to care for me. Girls, you that have mothers, don't neglect them. Help them all you can to do the work. You don't know how much pleasure it is unless you were in a rolling chair like me and saw your mother doing all the work. I think the cousins are all good girls. Some of them have been very kind to me. They have sent me thirteen most beautiful quilt squares and a great many beautiful cards. One sent me some flowers. I have them with a glass over them where I can look at them all the time. She said she would send me some bulbs and I would be very glad to get them. I wish I could do something in return. I would send My picture to Mr. Big Hat if it would not be much expense, then all the cousins would see me in my rolling chair. It could be in one corner of the paper, for I would not disturb Mr. Big Hat's picture. I think it is so cute. I have a laugh at him every week. Oh, if I could go to the fair and see the cousins with their blue stars on. I think a star is the prettiest thing I ever saw. Cousins, look at the evening star and think of me, for I claim it. I think it is so pretty. Much love to all.
HOMER BEVILLE, Como, Hopkins Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: This is my first attempt to write to the cozy corner. I see some smaller than I write to The News. We are having dry, hot weather now, needing rain very badly. Cotton is scanty this year and we will not make much. Cousins, are all of you going to Mr. Big Hat's Summer School? I am not, for I don't think I am far enough advanced in my other studies. Cousins, do you like to pick cotton? I do not. I can't pick fast and then I have to play along, too. Papa hurries me up and I'll pick fast for a while. I go fishing nearly every week, and nearly always catch a nice mess of fish. I have never gone hunting. Papa says I'm too small to handle a gun. Papa went hunting yesterday evening and stayed until night and killed two young turkeys and went again this morning before day and killed another one. Papa has splendid luck with his turkeys. There is a great deal of sickness in this community at present. We have it all around. In a family living to us every one of them is in bed sick. There has not been many deaths, though. I will close by asking some questions. Why can an idle scholar read his lesson and at the same time count the marbles in his pockets? Why is a slight blow on the back of a rabbit's head fatal?
LOTTIE BEVILLE, Como, Hopkins Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: Here comes a little girl 9 years of age, asking for admittance into your happy band. This is my first attempt to write to The News. I have been reading the cousins' letters for a long time, and enjoy them very much. We are having dry and hot weather here and everything is almost dried up. It hasn't rained for some time. I couldn't join the Summer School, because I hadn't ever written before. Mr. Big Hat, I have got a big doll named Peggy. It is nearly as large as I am. I am going to try to write a more interesting letter next time. I think the girls write the best letters. The boys don't seem to try.
JOSIE SMITH, Ryan, McLennan Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat: Seeing so many nice letters from the cousins I have resolved to write one, too. Cousins, I hope you have not made Mamie Johnston vexed, for even if she did speak from experience, her letters were good and I wish she would come again. I think the department is improving very fast, but some of the best writers have not written in quite awhile. Our "News Boy" cousin has quit writing, altogether, I think. Wasn't Rosie Belle Fisher's letter interesting? I wish she would come again. Some of the cousins complain that the boys don't write good letters, but I think their letters are very interesting. I would like to correspond with Cousin Lula Roxie and some of the other cousins. I will promise to answer all letters promptly. I wish I could write as good letters as Evangel Bowman. When I read her letter in last week's News I thought she was about 16, and she said she was 9 years old. My age is 14. Poor Peggy!
BERTHA REED, Ballinger, Runnels Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: Here I come again to join your happy band after two or three weeks of absence. I suppose if I make a habit of coming often, Mr. Big Hat would cease to print my letters and then, Oh, what a feast for Peggy! Where has Thomas O. Stewart disappeared to? If he doesn't put in his appearance soon we will have to make a search for him. Ida Pfeffer, come again! You write splendid letters. Edwin McWilliams, I agree with you about killing birds. I think it is wrong. They have as much right to live as we do and also as much feeling. My age is 15 years. I would like to correspond with some of the cousins of both sexes. Success to little Mr. Big Hat and The News!
OTHO SHELTON HINES, Farmersville, Collin Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: I am coming, [even] if it does scare me, this being my first effort in sending a letter to "Little Men and Women." It looks like it would be as easy to write as to talk to my playmates, but I find this to be a mistake. I am 9 years old and am in the fourth grade in our college. I have a nice little pony. Her name is Amy. My brother Leon has a match for her. We hitch them to the surrey almost every day and have a drive. I have been in the great Dallas News office with my papa often, but failed to see you, Mr. Big Hat.
JOHNNIE PRICE, Kingwillow, Navarro Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: I am "shoving" for admittance. I have seen many nice letters from all over the state, and none from this part. The girls made an impression on my mind that it was an impossibility not to write when they were giving the boys "taffy" on every side. Now, boys, can't we stop some of this? There is one way, if we will only "shove." I think we will find a place at the front and give them the rear. Can't we have more zeal and energy than they? Who is it to-day that occupy the highest places of business? The gentlemen. Now, I acknowledge that a lady, as a general rule, is far better in the art of composition than man, she has proven this, but be not discouraged, boys. "Shove" your way to the front, though respect the ladies. Every time you have a chance, write something to the Cozy Corner, doing your best. If you don't succeed the first time, "try, try, again." Some boys are afraid to try, or "shove," as it were. If we do not try, why of course the girls will keep the lead. Now, I don't object to them leading the boys for "good looks." This I rather fancy they should do, for 'tis their privilege. Some girls think boys are only fit for the mill pond and to rob birds' nests, etc. Girls, don't think all boys belong to this class, for they do not. I think we have a few belonging to our department who some day will be great men, even greater men than you anticipate. Look out now that some of your girls do not fail in equating them in your womanhood. While you reveal superiority now, years may change the appearance. You must remember the lady is matured before the gentleman. If I am not laboring under the wrong impression, we have some who call themselves "girls," when they are really grown up. I am confident if our young men were to write, we would have letters that would be wise to state that I have not reached the age of maturity, though the most, if not all, of the boys are boys in both age and ways. It may be well to just add that we, the cousins, should all strive to gain something in the art of letter writing and make our corner instructive as well as interesting. If Peggy doesn't get a chance at my letter, I may come again some time, and tell you about how I made a steam engine when very small. Come again, Rudolph Bollier. I like your letters very much, and several others write well, whose names I can't remember.
BURETT GOUGER, Red Oak, Ellis Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat: When I am sound asleep it takes a very great noise to wake me up, but when you call my name I will move in a minute. Now sometimes something comes about that makes a dreadful noise, but it hardly every (sic) wakes me, unless it sounds like my name. So if all the cousins are like I am it would be a very good idea, Mr. Big Hat, to call a few more names. Cousins, I read all your letters week before last, but I haven't received The News for last week yet. Earl Driskell, I was glad to know you read my piece in the paper, though I'm not past 13 nor old enough to wear specks or false teeth. Cousins, I may be with you and Mr. Big Hat when the fair commences.
GRACE EWING, Childress, Childress Co., Tex. -- Little Mr. Big Hat: Here I come again, for Peggy got my other letter. I have two pets, a prairie dog and a cat. I am 10 years old. I will answer Lillian Armstrong's question. The Mississippi and the Missouri rivers unite to make the longest river in the world, and it flows into the Gulf of Mexico.
[Note: The name applied to the letter below is a Dallas News error.
All that's known, is that it originated from Lincoln Co., New Mexico]
GRACE EWING, Childress, Tex. -- Little Mr. Big Hat and cousins: This is my second attempt to write to Mr. Big Hat's department. I enjoy reading the cousins' letters. Some of them are real nice ones. I will describe the county I live in, as well as I can. It is very broken, hilly and rocky. We have a great deal of snow in winter and a great deal of rain in summer. I live in Lincoln county, eighteen miles from Penasco creek and six miles from Pine Spring postoffice. My father is off gathering cattle and branding calves. Festus Bennett, your age is 19 years. My age is 14. There is plenty of game here, such as deer and turkey. Thomas O. Stewart, I wish you would write to me. We may be kinfolks. Success to The News.
LAWRENCE W. NEFF, Paducah, Cottle Co., Tex. -- Mr. Big Hat and cousins: As this is Sunday and I have nothing else to do, I will impose on you for a small amount of space. Ye editor (who is myself) and ye "devil" (also myself) have a tough time this hot weather. The mercury seldom sinks below 105 degrees in the shade out here, and one day it was at 114 in the shade and 132 in the sun. I still exist, though almost incinerated, and hope for winter. L. C. Fountain, I am much obliged for the selection which you sent me, and I sent you a copy of the paper containing it. Ida Robertson, I received your original poem, which I will soon publish. I think it was excellent. The proposition which you made will be very agreeable to me. Cousins, I have changed the name of my paper; it is to be the Paducah Headlight. Since my last letter there has been an addition to our family circle, which flourishes under the name of "Pansy." I wished to have the naming of her, but was overruled. Mr. Big Hat, those Indian names which you published last week reminded me of one which I once heard. It was "Lillie Walk-on-the-Water, Feet-Just-Like-a-Board." Mr. Big Hat, you asked me to write an article on "Country Newspaper Work," but as I fear that I could not make it interesting I hope you will excuse me. Evangel Bowman, your last letter was good, but I believe you were joking when you stated you were not yet 9 years old. Nell Fallon, in what part of Kentucky do you live? We originally came from Kentucky, Hardin county. Crops are fine out here -- much better than they are to the east and I think we will have a large number of immigrants here this year. I would like to correspond with any of the cousins.
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